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Notes on the genus Cactodera Krall & Krall, 1978 and proposal of Betulodera betulae gen. nov., comb. nov. (Nematoda: Heteroderidae)

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Based mainly on an analysis of the host ranges of the species presently placed in Cactodera, sensu lato, and of selected morphological characteristics, an attempt is made to improve the definition of the genus which, after exclusion of C. betulae and C. johanseni, is considered to be monophyletic. The host range of Cactodera, sensu stricto, appears to be restricted to the subclass Caryophyllidae with the ten known species showing an adaptive radiation on host genera in five families of the orders Caryophyllales and Polygonales. This may be a result of co-evolution. Cactodera betulae cannot be assigned to any of the presently recognised genera of cyst-forming nematodes and therefore Betulodera gen. nov. is proposed with B. betulae comb. nov. as the type and only species. The relationship of Betulodera gen. nov. to other genera of Heteroderidae and to some undescribed heteroderid species has still to be evaluated. The new genus is characterised by circumfenestrate cysts with only a slightly protruding vulval cone, three incisures in the lateral field of the second-stage juveniles and presence of phasmids in the males. The hosts are in unrelated plant orders and subclasses. Cactodera aquatica, a species inquirenda, is returned to the genus Heterodera and Heterodera johanseni (Sharma et al. , 2001) comb. nov. is proposed for C. johanseni.


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